|Number of teams||18 (since 1966–67)|
|Level on pyramid||1|
|Relegation to||Eerste Divisie|
|Current champions|| Feyenoord (16th title) |
|Most championships||Ajax (36 titles)|
|Most appearances||Pim Doesburg (687)|
|Top goalscorer||Willy van der Kuijlen (311)|
|TV partners||List of broadcasters|
|Current: 2023–24 Eredivisie|
The Eredivisie (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈeːrədivizi] ; "Honour Division" or "Premier Division") is the highest level of professional football in the Netherlands. The league was founded in 1956, two years after the start of professional football in the Netherlands. As of the 2023–24 season, it is ranked the 5th-best league in Europe by UEFA.
The Eredivisie consists of 18 clubs. Each club meets every other club twice during the season, once at home and once away. At the end of each season, the two clubs at the bottom are relegated to the second level of the Dutch league system, the Eerste Divisie (First Division), while the champion and runner-up of the Eerste Divisie are automatically promoted to the Eredivisie. The club finishing third from the bottom of the Eredivisie goes to separate promotion/relegation play-offs with six high-placed clubs from the Eerste Divisie.
The winner of the Eredivisie claims the Dutch national championship. Ajax have won the most titles with 36. PSV Eindhoven are next with 24, and Feyenoord follow with 16. Since 1965, these three clubs have won all but three Eredivisie titles (the 1981 and 2009 titles went to AZ and FC Twente won in 2010). Ajax, PSV, and Feyenoord are known as the "Big Three" or "Traditional Top Three" of Dutch football. They are the only clubs in their current form to have never been relegated out of the Eredivisie. A fourth club, FC Utrecht, is the product of a 1970 merger between three of that city's clubs, one of which, VV DOS, had also never been relegated out of the Eredivisie.
From 1990 to 1999, the official name of the league was PTT Telecompetitie (after the sponsor, PTT Telecom), which was changed to KPN Telecompetitie (because PTT Telecom changed its name to KPN Telecom) in 1999 and to KPN Eredivisie in 2000. From 2002 to 2005, the league was called the Holland Casino Eredivisie. Since the 2005–06 season, the league has been sponsored by the Vriendenloterij (lottery), but for legal reasons its name could not be attached to the league (the Dutch government was against the name, because the Eredivisie would, after Holland Casino's sponsorship, yet again be sponsored by a company providing games of chance).
In August 2012, it was made public that tycoon Rupert Murdoch had secured the rights to the Eredivisie for 12 years at the expense of one billion euros, beginning in the 2013–14 season.Within this deal, the five largest Eredivisie clubs were to receive five million euros per year. In 2020, the Eredivisie was abandoned due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
From the foundation of the Dutch national football championship in 1898 until 1954, the title was decided through play-offs by a handful of clubs who had previously won their regional league.The competition was purely an amateur one; the Royal Dutch Football Association (KNVB) rejected any form of payment and suspended players who were caught receiving salary or transfer fees. The call for professional football grew in the early fifties after many national team members left to play abroad in search for financial benefits. The KNVB would usually suspend these players, preventing them from appearing for the Dutch national team. After the North Sea flood of 1953, the Dutch players abroad (mainly playing in the French league) organised a charity match against the France national team in Paris. The match was boycotted by the KNVB, but after the assembled Dutch players defeated the French (2–1), the Dutch public witnessed the heights that could be achieved through professional football. To serve the growing interest, a dissident professional football association (the NBVB) and league were founded for the 1954–55 season. On 3 July 1954, the KNVB met with a group of concerned amateur club chairmen, who feared the best players would join the professional teams. The meeting, dubbed the slaapkamerconferentie ('bedroom conference'), led to the Association reluctantly accepting semi-professionalism.
Meanwhile, both the KNVB and the NBVB started their separate competition. The first professional football match was contested between Alkmaar and Venlo.The leagues went on for eleven rounds, before a merger was negotiated between the two federations in November. Both leagues were cancelled and a new, combined competition emerged immediately. De Graafschap, Amsterdam, Alkmaar and Fortuna '54 from the NBVB were accepted to the new league. Other clubs merged, which led to new names like Rapid J.C., Holland Sport and Roda Sport. The first (semi-)professional league was won by Willem II. For the 1956–57 season, the KNVB abandoned the regional league system. The Eredivisie was founded, in which the eighteen best clubs nationwide directly played for the league title without play-offs. The inaugural members of the Eredivisie in 1956 were Ajax, BVC, BVV, DOS, EVV, Elinkwijk, SC Enschede, Feijenoord, Fortuna '54, GVAV, MVV, NAC, NOAD, PSV, Rapid J.C., Sparta, VVV '03 and Willem II. Ajax was the first team to claim the title that season. Below is a complete record of how many teams played in each season throughout the league's history;
|No. of seasons|
|1st season of|
|No. of seasons|
of current spell
|Eredivisie titles||National titles||Last title|
|Go Ahead Eagles||Deventer||10,000||11th||1963–64||34||2021–22||3||0||4||1933|
|Sparta Rotterdam a||Rotterdam||11,026||6th||1956–57||58||2019–20||5||1||6||1959|
|FC Twente c||Enschede||30,205||5th||1956–57||65||2019–20||5||1||1||2010|
|FC Utrecht bd||Utrecht||23,750||7th||1970–71||54||1970–71||54||0||0||-|
* Heracles Almelo finished first and PEC Zwolle finished second in the 2022–23 Eerste Divisie. Almere City finished 3rd and defeated FC Emmen in the playoff final.
a Founding member of the Eredivisie
b Never been relegated from the Eredivisie
c Founding member of the Eredivisie (as Sportclub Enschede)
d Founding member of the Eredivisie (as VV DOS and USV Elinkwijk)
|Ajax||36||23||1917–18, 1918–19, 1930–31, 1931–32, 1933–34, 1936–37, 1938–39, 1946–47, 1956–57, 1959–60, 1965–66, 1966–67, 1967–68, 1969–70, 1971–72, 1972–73, 1976–77, 1978–79, 1979–80, 1981–82, 1982–83, 1984–85, 1989–90, 1993–94, 1994–95, 1995–96, 1997–98, 2001–02, 2003–04, 2010–11, 2011–12, 2012–13, 2013–14, 2018–19, 2020–21, 2021–22|
|PSV Eindhoven||24||16||1928–29, 1934–35, 1950–51, 1962–63, 1974–75, 1975–76, 1977–78, 1985–86, 1986–87, 1987–88, 1988–89, 1990–91, 1991–92, 1996–97, 1999–00, 2000–01, 2002–03, 2004–05, 2005–06, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2017–18|
|Feyenoord||16||21||1923–24, 1927–28, 1935–36, 1937–38, 1939–40, 1960–61, 1961–62, 1964–65, 1968–69, 1970–71, 1973–74, 1983–84, 1992–93, 1998–99, 2016–17, 2022–23|
|HVV Den Haag||10||1||1890–91, 1895–96, 1899–1900, 1900–01, 1901–02, 1902–03, 1904–05, 1906–07, 1909–10, 1913–14|
|Sparta Rotterdam||6||–||1908–09, 1910–11, 1911–12, 1912–13, 1914–15, 1958–59|
|RAP||5||3||1891–92, 1893–94, 1896–97, 1897–98, 1898–99|
|Go Ahead Eagles||4||5||1916–17, 1921–22, 1929–30, 1932–33|
|Koninklijke HFC||3||3||1889–90, 1892–93, 1894–95|
|Willem II||3||1||1915–16, 1951–52, 1954–55|
|HBS Craeyenhout||3||–||1903–04, 1905–06, 1924–25|
|Heracles Almelo||2||1||1926–27, 1940–41|
|ADO Den Haag||2||–||1941–42, 1942–43|
|Roda JC Kerkrade*||1||2||1955–56|
|FC Den Bosch||1||1||1947–48|
|Quick Den Haag||1||–||1907–08|
* As Rapid JC.
|1st||–||Champions League group stage|
|2nd||–||Champions League third qualifying round of the League Path.|
|3rd||–||Europa League play-off round|
|4th||–||Conference League third qualifying round|
|5th–8th/6th-9th||European competition play-offs||4th vs 7th and 5th vs 6th or 5th vs 8th and 6th vs 7th; the two winners play each other to qualify for: |
Europa Conference League second qualifying round
|KNVB Cup winners||–||Europa League play-off round (group stage if the Europa Conference League winners have already qualified for the UCL through their domestic league)|
|Position||Playoff||What happens next|
|16th||Nacompetitie||The 3rd to 8th placed teams in the Keuken Kampioen Divisie compete against each other for a spot in the semi finals. The remaining 3 teams and the 16th placed team from the Eredivisie then face off in a double legged knock out system for the final place in the Eredivisie.|
|17th-18th||–||Direct relegation to the Keuken Kampioen Divisie|
|ADO Den Haag||12,561|
Since the beginning of the league, there have been three clubs with an attendance much higher than the others: Ajax, PSV and Feyenoord. Clubs like Heerenveen, FC Utrecht and FC Groningen also have fairly large fanbases. The regular season average league attendance was just over 7,000 in 1990, but this figure has risen sharply over the years thanks to the opening of new stadiums and the expansion of existing ones nationwide. Average attendance for the 2018–19 season was 18,010, with Ajax having the largest (52,987) and Excelsior having the smallest (4,223). Ajax's figures however differ from those provided by the Johan Cruyff Arena since the club counts all tickets sold instead of the number of people going through the turnstiles.
|Playing in the Eredivisie|
|Playing in the Eerste Divisie|
|Playing in the amateur leagues|
|Club has been disestablished or merged into another club|
|8.||Roda JC Kerkrade||44||1496||563||391||542||2080||1,39||2260||2208||+52|
|10.||ADO Den Haag||45||1514||501||387||626||1890||1,25||2172||2486||-314|
|17.||Go Ahead Eagles||31||1042||325||268||449||1243||1,19||1399||1701||-302|
|32.||FC Den Bosch||12||442||114||123||205||465||1,05||491||756||-265|
|Rank||Name||Games||Playing position||First match||Last match|
|Rank||Name||Goals||Games||Goals per game||Playing position||First goal||Last goal|
|1||Willy van der Kuijlen||311||545||0.57||Forward||1964–65||1981–82|
|5||Tonny van der Linden||208||-||-||Forward||1956–57||1966–67|
|1958–59||Leo Canjels (2)||34||NAC|
|1960–61||Henk Groot (2)||41||Ajax|
|1961–62||Dick Tol||27||FC Volendam|
|1964–65||Frans Geurtsen (2)||23||DWS|
|1965–66|| Willy van der Kuijlen |
|23|| PSV |
|1968–69|| Dick van Dijk |
|30|| FC Twente |
|1969–70||Willy van der Kuijlen||26||PSV|
|1970–71||Ove Kindvall (3)||24||Feyenoord|
|1971–72||Johan Cruyff (2)||25||Ajax|
|1972–73|| Cas Janssens |
|18|| NEC |
|1973–74||Willy van der Kuijlen (3)||27||PSV|
|1978–79||Kees Kist||34||AZ Alkmaar|
|1979–80||Kees Kist (2)||27||AZ Alkmaar|
|1980–81||Ruud Geels (5)||22||Sparta|
|1983–84||Marco van Basten||28||Ajax|
|1984–85||Marco van Basten||22||Ajax|
|1985–86||Marco van Basten||37||Ajax|
|1986–87||Marco van Basten (4)||31||Ajax|
|1987–88||Wim Kieft (2)||29||PSV|
|1990–91|| Romário (3) |
|25|| PSV |
|1992–93||Dennis Bergkamp (3)||26||Ajax|
|1996–97||Luc Nilis (2)||21||PSV|
|1998–99||Ruud van Nistelrooy||31||PSV|
|1999–2000||Ruud van Nistelrooy (2)||29||PSV|
|2001–02||Pierre van Hooijdonk||24||Feyenoord|
|2003–04||Mateja Kežman (3)||31||PSV|
|2005–06||Klaas-Jan Huntelaar||33||SC Heerenveen/Ajax|
|2006–07||Afonso Alves||34||SC Heerenveen|
|2007–08||Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (2)||33||Ajax|
|2008–09||Mounir El Hamdaoui||23||AZ|
|2011–12||Bas Dost||32||SC Heerenveen|
|2013–14||Alfreð Finnbogason||29||SC Heerenveen|
|2018–19|| Luuk de Jong |
|28|| PSV |
|2019–20|| Steven Berghuis |
|15|| Feyenoord |
|2022–23|| Anastasios Douvikas |
|19|| FC Utrecht |
|Netherlands||ESPN; NOS||ESPN airs all matches live and the NOS broadcasts match summaries on the open channels NPO 1 and 3|
|Azerbaijan||CBC Sport||Live Eredivisie matches|
|Belgium|| Play Sports |
|Two matches per week, since 2015|
|Indian subcontinent||Dream11 and Eurosport||Two–three matches per week on Eurosport and FanCode|
|Albania||DigitAlb / SuperSport||Two matches per week and highlights|
|Poland|| Polsat Sport |
Polsat Sport Extra
Polsat Sport News
|2–5 matches (1–4 live) every week and highlights, since the 2002–03 season.|
|Turkey||Tivibu||Live Eredivisie matches|
|Russia||Telekanal Futbol||Live matches every week, two or three times|
|Balkans||Sport Klub||Live matches every week, two or three times|
|Portugal||Sport TV||Two or three live matches every week|
|Slovakia||Arena Sport||Two or three live matches every week|
|Austria, Germany||Sportdigital.tv, DAZN||Up to three matches per week, and highlights (mostly Ajax, PSV and Feyenoord matches)|
|South Korea||tvN||Live PSV matches|
|United Kingdom and Ireland||Mola TV||Live Eredivisie matches|
|Norway||Viasat Fotball||One match live on Sunday 11.30 CET|
|Lithuania||Sport1||Up to two matches per week and highlights|
|Bulgaria||Max Sport||Two or three live matches every week|
|Sub-Saharan Africa||ESPN||Three live matches every week, sometimes four|
|Latin America||ESPN||Two matches every week are broadcast live, one only on ESPN Play (WatchESPN in Brazil).|
|Indonesia||Mola TV||Up to four matches per week live and on demand, from 2020 to 2021.|
|Malaysia||Astro SuperSport||Up to three live matches every week.|
|Philippines||Tap DMV||Up to three live matches every week.|
|Singapore||Singtel TV||Up to three live matches every week.|
|MENA||Abu Dhabi Sports||Up to three live matches every week.|
|Vietnam||VTVCab, HTV||1990-2002, HTV broadcasting all matches. |
2019-present, Up to three live matches every week.
|Canada||OneSoccer||Up to three live matches every week.|
The following sixteen international tournaments were won by Eredivisie teams:
The UEFA Super Cup was founded by a Dutch reporter named Anton Witkamp and Ajax's 1973 win was the first time the tournament was contested officially.
Alkmaar Zaanstreek, better known internationally as AZ Alkmaar, or simply and most commonly as AZ in the Netherlands, is a Dutch professional football club from Alkmaar and the Zaan district. The club plays in the Eredivisie, the highest professional football league in the Netherlands.
Jakob "Jaap" Stam is a Dutch professional football coach and former player. As a player, he played as a centre-back and is regarded as one of the best defenders of his generation.
Football Club Twente, sometimes known internationally as FC Twente Enschede, is a Dutch professional football club from the city of Enschede. The club was formed in 1965 by the merger of 1926 Dutch champions Sportclub Enschede with Enschedese Boys. It was the holder of the 2011 KNVB Cup and Johan Cruyff Shield trophies, and was Eredivisie champion in the 2009–10 season; the club has also finished as Eredivisie runner-up twice, was runner-up in the 1974–75 UEFA Cup, and has won the KNVB Cup three times. Twente's home ground since 1998 is De Grolsch Veste. Since 2019, the team have played in the Eredivisie, the top division of Dutch football.
Willem II, also known as Willem II Tilburg, is a Dutch football club based in Tilburg, Netherlands. They play in the Eerste Divisie, the second tier of Dutch football, following relegation from the Eredivisie in the 2021–22 season. The club was founded on 12 August 1896 as Tilburgia. On 12 January 1898, the club was renamed Willem II after Dutch king William II of the Netherlands (1792–1849), who, as Prince of Orange and commander of the Dutch army, had his military headquarters in Tilburg during the Belgian uprising of 1830, spent much time in the city after becoming king, and died there.
The Eerste Divisie is the second-highest tier of football in the Netherlands. It is linked with the top-level Eredivisie and with the third-level Tweede Divisie via promotion/relegation systems. It is also known as the Keuken Kampioen Divisie due to sponsorship reasons, while previously it was known as Jupiler League for the same reason.
The 2005–06 season of the Eredivisie began in August 2005 and ended in May 2006. PSV Eindhoven became champion on April 9, 2006. The season was overshadowed by the death of FC Utrecht player David di Tommaso.
Remko Jurian Pasveer is a Dutch professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Eredivisie club Ajax.
The 2006–07 Eredivisie season began on August 18, 2006. The season saw PSV Eindhoven quickly building a gap with the other teams. After 20 matches, the club was 11 points ahead of AZ and 12 points ahead of Ajax. The lead quickly dissipated in the 13 matches that followed. A draw of PSV at FC Utrecht in the penultimate round saw AZ and Ajax catching up. The three clubs were all on 72 points from 33 matches, with the AZ on top due to goal difference. Ajax were second, PSV were third. AZ suffered a shock defeat at league minnows Excelsior Rotterdam in the final round, playing with 10 men after 15 minutes in the game. Ajax won 0–2 at Willem II, and PSV beat Vitesse 5–1. PSV and Ajax both finished on 75 points, but PSV finished first due to a better goal difference to end one of the most exciting and closest title races in many years.
The Dutch Eredivisie in the 1986–87 season was contested by 18 teams. PSV Eindhoven won the championship. At the beginning of the season, AZ '67 from Alkmaar changed their name to AZ.
The Dutch Eredivisie in the 1989–90 season was contested by 18 teams. Ajax won the championship.
The Dutch Eredivisie in the 1994–95 season was contested by 18 teams. Ajax won the championship. Starting this season, clubs qualifying for the Intertoto Cup can play for a spot in the UEFA Cup.
The 1997–98 Eredivisie season was contested by 18 teams. Ajax won the championship.
The Dutch Eredivisie in the 1998–99 season was contested by 18 teams. Feyenoord won the championship.
Football is the most popular sport in the Netherlands. Football was introduced to the Netherlands by Pim Mulier in the 19th century when in 1879, at the age of 14, he founded Haarlemsche Football Club. Over the next 30 years, football gained popularity in the Netherlands and the late 1890s and early 1900s saw the foundation of many new clubs, notably Sparta Rotterdam in 1888, which is the oldest professional football club in the country, AFC Ajax in 1900, Feyenoord Rotterdam in 1908, and PSV Eindhoven in 1913.
The Beloften Eredivisie was the highest football league for reserve teams in the Netherlands organized by the Royal Dutch Football Association (KNVB). The league was founded in 1992 as Reserve Teams Eredivisie and this name was in use until the 2000–01 season. The second teams are called beloften teams.
The 2013–14 AFC Ajax season saw the club participate in the Eredivisie, the KNVB Cup and the UEFA Champions League. The first training took place on 24 June 2012, and the traditional AFC Ajax Open Day was held on 25 July, followed by a testimonial match on 3 July for retired former Ajax forward Sjaak Swart for his 75th birthday.
Johannes Cornelis Maria Veerman is a Dutch professional footballer who plays as a midfielder for Eredivisie club PSV Eindhoven and the Netherlands national team.
Quinten Ryan Crispito Timber is a Dutch professional footballer who plays as central-midfielder, defensive-midfielder or attacking-midfielder for Eredivisie club Feyenoord F.C and the Netherlands national under-21 football team. He is the twin brother of Jurriën Timber who is also a professional footballer currently playing as centre-back for Premier League club Arsenal F.C and the younger brother of Dylan Timber who is also a professional footballer respectively playing for Eerste Divisie club VVV-Venlo FC.
The 2021–22 Eredivisie was the 66th season of Eredivisie, the premier football competition in the Netherlands. It began on 14 August 2021 and concluded on 15 May 2022.
The 2022–23 KNVB Cup, for sponsoring reasons officially called the TOTO KNVB Beker, was the 105th season of the annual Dutch national football cup competition. It began in August with the first of two preliminary rounds, and concluded in April 2023 with the final played at De Kuip in Rotterdam.